President Donald Trump fired right back Wednesday when a reporter asked what he would do if former President Barack Obama had asked a foreign leader for dirt on him.
The president held a lengthy news conference to address the transcript of his call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky — and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s Tuesday announcement that she planned to move forward with an official impeachment inquiry — following a day of meetings and other press opportunities at the United Nations. (RELATED: Goalposts Already On The Move As Trump Promises To Release Ukraine Call Transcript)
Trump wrapped up his remarks with a call for questions, saying that he would love to answer at least a few questions about the administration’s accomplishments over the past few days at the UN instead of more questions about “the witch hunt,” saying, “I know that’s what you want to ask because it’s probably better for you but it’s not better for the country. So maybe we’ll take a few questions.”
The first reporter he called on was unwilling to comply, asking a hypothetical question about what Trump might do if the shoe were on the other foot.
“Thank you, Mr. President. You suggested you didn’t do anything wrong in the course of your conversations the Ukrainian president. Can you explain to the American people why it is appropriate for an American President to ask a foreign leader for information about a political rival and what you would’ve said if you had discovered that Barack Obama perhaps had asked a foreign leader for information about you?”
President Trump appeared slightly taken aback. “Well, that’s what he did. When you think about it,” he responded.
“The president, the new president of Ukraine is looking to stop corruption,” Trump continued, taking aim at former Vice President Joe Biden and several senators who wrote a letter to Zelensky earlier this year.
“There’s a lot of corruption going on and there was corruption — I just told you about senators that threatened him with votes and no money coming in to Ukraine. That’s really what people are trying to say that I did but the only difference is I didn’t do it. You take a look at that call. It was perfect … There was no quid pro quo. But there was with Biden then there was with the senators. They threatened. They said you do this, you do that. We are not going to give you votes. That’s the real deal,” he said.